Hellenic Post is at risk of collapse


State-owned Hellenic Post SA (ELTA) is seeking a solution to its serious liquidity problem in cooperation with the ministries of Finance and Transport, claiming to be owed a total of 200 million euros in revenues from the public service it supplies both to the public and the private sector.

This concerns serving the state and its private clients, even in the remotest parts of the country, a service that ELTA had priced at 15 million euros a year up to 2015. This entailed an outstanding total of 45 million for the 2013-15 period. However, the price was adjusted to 50 million per year in September 2016, raising the total for those three years to 150 million, plus another 50 million for last year.

The fact that the state has not paid its dues – even at the lower rate of 15 million euros per year – has led to the financial asphyxiation of the corporation, with multiple consequences not only in terms of liquidity but also capital, which will turn negative unless its claim is satisfied.

To meet its cash requirements, ELTA has also been forced to withhold 13 million euros due to Eurobank that ELTA had collected in the bank’s account based on the two sides’ agreement concerning Eurobank-owned Hellenic Postbank.

Sources from the company’s management claim the problem with the pending state payment will probably be resolved next week, as it is in constant consultations with the government, adding that the Eurobank issue will also be overcome soon. The bank has proposed the solution of the problem through the signing of a new contract, with fresh collateral.

The electricity market is also feeling hot under the collar as amassed debts have exceeded 800 million euros. Public Power Corporation’s arrears to the Independent Power Transmission Operator (ADMIE) and the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator (DEDDIE) exceed 600 million euros, while the deficit of the Renewable Energy Sources account stood at 206 million at the end of 2016.

Energy groups have informed the Energy and Economy ministries of the risk that the market could go bust in the next couple of months unless immediate measures to assist its liquidity are taken.